Dear Friends and Neighbors,
Last week, you allowed me into your homes and/or mobile devices to offer a short survey on a proposed transportation revenue package. The response was great and very informative for me. I wanted to share some of the results of this virtual listening tour. While the survey remains open and I will continue to request public input, below is an update on where results stand as of yesterday.
Would you be willing to pay 10 cents or more per gallon of gas to pay for transportation projects around the state?
- 13.4% Yes
- 85.6% No
- 1% I’m not sure
If you had to pay 10 cents or more per gallon of gas, how would this impact you financially?
- 7.7% It would have little to no impact on me financially
- 41.2% It would have a moderate impact on me financially, but I could probably afford it
- 51.1% It would have a negative impact on me financially and I cannot afford it
If our state moves forward with a transportation revenue package, please rank what you think the funding priorities should be:
The numbers below are rating averages. The lower the number, the higher prioritization participants gave that particular issue. As you will see below, participants believe “Maintenance, including bridge and road preservation” should be the state’s top funding priority. And they believe that “More pedestrian and bicycle paths” should be the lowest priority of the six options.
- 1.55 Maintenance, including bridge and road preservation
- 2.24 New lanes for congested roadways
- 3.53 Large projects
- 4.08 Washington State Ferries
- 4.52 Transit agencies
- 5.08 More pedestrian and bicycle paths
The governor is pushing for a special session, before the regular legislative session scheduled for January 2014, to pass a transportation revenue package. Do you think a special session is necessary for this issue?
- 9.8% Yes
- 82.5% No
- 7.7% Not sure
There were also parts of the survey that allowed people to expand and share their views on certain issues. Here are some of the comments, verbatim:
- Thank you for asking my opinion. I feel like my voice can be heard by someone in government.
- Quit the political showmanship games and fund this stuff!
- I am low income and cannot afford to pay more for gas to get to work and take kids to school.
- The gas tax increase would affect rural people who have to travel longer distances to shop and medical services and often drive older less fuel efficient vehicles. Plus the big hwy money is spent in King Co.
- In a stagnant economy, increased fuel cost will cripple any recovery.
- I do not believe that the WSDOT is a failure.
- I’m retired from WSDOT and they need more accountability
- Get rid of the sales tax on transportation projects, and remove the prevailing wage provisions. This will save 30 to 40%
- Maintenance of our existing infrastructure is most important. We don’t want to build new infrastructure if we cannot afford to adequately maintain what we have currently.
- Green transportation, green transportation, green transportation.
- Ferries need to charge more if they can’t pay for themselves. Money should not be mixed around in a chaotic way so no one can keep tabs on what is actually happening. Keep our infrastructure strong with safe and effective roads.
- I think the extra money is needed but the following must be done. 1. No more sales tax on transportation projects. 2. Reduce cost and regulations regarding permitting. 3. Revise prevailing wage 4. Eliminate bonding.
- Politicians are not the answer. An oversight group which includes the best of a variety of disciplines needs to be put in place to monitor major projects. Also, on going audit of the use of money is essential to minimize waste.
- Hwy. 2 is in desperate need of widening. It is one of the only transit routes over the Cascades, and is totally inadequate for personal cars and for commercial truckers. It is a very dangerous highway also, and deserves a top priority ranking in funding.
- I am a Senior and fill my gas tank once a month. When this gas is gone I have to wait until my next payday on the third day of every month before I can travel more. When I take any trip I make sure it is the most cost effective route and plan.
- Fix the spending problems before reaching further into my pockets.
- Nice talk, but no detail or substance. Who makes the determination as to what is or is not essential? What does “protect the environment” mean? How do you ensure taxpayers don’t get stuck, when that is what always happens.
- Money should go to transportation that people use, NOT to what the planners wish we would use.
- Transportation dollars should be spent on transportation, not other items.
- I am against tolls and concerned that many future projects will include them. I would always prefer a raise in gas tax first.
- I’d be willing to vote for any package that seriously considers the “whole” transportation system in the state in an integrated plan – why throw more money into a system that isn’t working (highway/road/single passenger car, etc.).
Again, this short survey remains open. If you have not taken it yet, please consider doing so.
In your service,